Vegetable Alphabet Soup

Vegetarian Alphabet Soup
Soup is one of those things that I always thought would be difficult to make before I actually made it. It's great for a chilly day or when you're fighting off a cold. If my husband and I want to make a no fuss soup that doesn't require a food processor or different pots and pans we usually go for a vegetable soup. And the last couple of times we made it we decided to throw in alphabet pasta.  Because it's cool. And it works well in soup because the letters are small. There really isn't a recipe we follow but I kept track of everything we used this time for the sake of writing out a recipe. The vegetables and seasonings can all be changed to your liking but this is the gist:

3 medium potatoes 
3 carrots
2 stalks of celery
1 zucchini
1 shallot
3 cloves of garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon tomato paste
5-6 cups of vegetable stock
5 oz alphabet pasta (Again, this doesn't need to be exact but I just used half of a 10 oz box)
Yoda with Alphabet Pasta, Tomato Paste, Vegetable Stock
The first step is to chop up all of the vegetables. Cube the potatoes, carrots, celery, and zucchini. 
Chopping Zucchini
Mince the shallot and garlic. Heat the olive oil in a large pot. Throw in the potatoes, carrots, celery, zucchini, shallots, and garlic at once. 
Vegetables Sauteing
Cook over medium high heat for about 10 minutes, stirring once in a while. Stir in the stock, tomato paste, salt, and pepper. If it looks like the stock is not covering your vegetables, just add more. 
Bring the soup to a boil. Once it is at a boil add the pasta and cook for 20 minutes. Stir frequently as the pasta tends to stick to the bottom. Enjoy with some warm bread. We like sourdough! 

Helpful Hints:
-The alphabet pasta we use has a cooking time of 20 minutes so if your pasta has a different cooking time adjust when you put the pasta in. 
-If you didn't add enough stock your soup probably looks like condensed soup at the end. Don't panic, this is easy to fix. Just add some more stock or water.
-Remember that this is just an approximate recipe and you can put in as many or as little vegetables as you want. You just need to adjust the amount of liquid you use.

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